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  1. #1
    Junior Member luiza's Avatar
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    would you charge to build a website if they're signing off the site to you anyway?

    I've been in contact with a charity who has a great idea for a website that needs to be built and it will help several charities in the UK and US, it's not a simple website, it'd take some time and some programming but I feel confident. When the site is finished, it will need to be moderated, looked after and they've told me they'd sign off the website rights to me so that I'd be responsible for it and therefore would earn the profit that the website will generate.

    I think I shouldn't charge any design fees because:
    1- The website will be mine anyway
    2-It's a charity


    When said I'd do it for free he said: ''oh,but you need to make a living! Think business!"

    Would you charge anything in this situation?

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  3. #2
    WDF Staff mlseim's Avatar
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    So I'm guessing they mean the profits from banner ads, ad clicks, etc? If it's a charity, they should not be making a profit? Charities have administration fees, and in the U.S., those fees can be millions of dollars paid to ONE or several people ... the CEO of the non-profit, and administrators. I would predict your profit would be close to zero?

    I can only speak for the non-profit organizations in the U.S., but unless you were part of the administration, you would not earn anything. Web page ads are not a reliable way to make a living ... unless the business is profitable and not a charity. This is just my opinion here: it sounds to me like they just found another free volunteer for their cause.


  4. #3
    Senior Member
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    I don't understand your arrangement. But always have them pay up front.
    "you will get paid a percentage of the site if it's successful" or "don't worry we will pay you in X Months/Years/etc." smells of a scam or unfair idea to me.

  5. #4
    Unpaid WDF Intern TheGAME1264's Avatar
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    When I first started, I gave discounts to not-for-profit and/or charitable organizations. I stopped about 8 years ago after the fourth charitable site I built as I saw a pattern emerge:

    1) Do site for cause you believe in at discounted rate.
    2) Discover vested interests and hidden (and not-so-hidden) agendas on the parts of the "board of directors" or the "president" or the "members" of the charity, most of whom are only there to leech for themselves rather than work as part of the collective they were supposed to be joining.
    3) Endure ridiculous amounts of criticism for things you had nothing to do with.
    4) Have them downward negotiate everything you try to charge them for after that on the grounds that they're doing good and if you don't do good by donating or discounting your time you're a heartless no-good SOB who really doesn't believe in the cause.
    5) In most cases, discover money routinely wasted and overspent on things that could easily go into the website and do much more good.

    That doesn't mean I won't do a charitable site. It just means I don't offer charitable discounts. Just because something sounds like a good idea or a useful and noble public service doesn't mean that it is, and it doesn't mean that the cause you're giving the break to is legitimate and efficient.

    So here's how I'd handle this:

    Charge a fee to build the site based on how long it would normally take you to do it.
    If you want to cut them a break, do it by saying "I'll administer your idea for 1 hour a day or X hours a week for free."
    If there are going to be profits to be made (and I'm guessing through advertising), sign up with Google Adsense or something like that where you can rotate publisher IDs in and out on a random basis. A lot of Adsense revenue sharing sites do this, so that'd be the approach I'd take.
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